Voices of the March

The following was submitted by Valerie:

Its 3:30 in the morning and I have no idea how I’m going to manage the full day ahead of me with only two hours of sleep. I look at the chaperons like they’re crazy and then I look around the room and everyone’s fighting their covers over their heads to keep the light out. We all know we need to pack up and get ready for the march but no one wants to do it. Now don’t get me wrong, the whole week had been fantastic with the visits to saint shrines and the beautiful basilicas, but honestly all I wanted was sleep. Of course we had lights out at 11:30 but we didn’t go to sleep until 1:30 talking, because we’re girls and that’s what we do, and every other day we had to wake up at 5 and if we questioned this the response was always ‘because we’re pilgrims not tourists’… I don’t know about you but to me this was pilgrim torture. On top of the lack of sleep, the freezing cold weather froze our hair when we walked outside and no matter how many clothes we had on, we never figured out how to stay warm. While this might sound slightly miserable, it was anything but. The SJA girls coming together and bonding, because that’s what we do, and tormenting Mr. Hallford, or Hulk as we came to know him on the trip, to stand up for a cause we believed in made the whole 23 hours on the bus (one way) worth it.

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Being in the Verizon center with the 30,000 other teens is something I will never forget. The power of the Holy Spirit that you feel while being in there is something that cannot be described. Imagine seeing all these high school and college students just jumping around, singing and praising God and coming together to speak for those to have no voice- the unborn. There was a quote that a girl said before the mass started that I found to be somewhat striking- she stated, “I wonder how we manage to look for life on mars, but we can’t seem to find it in the womb of a woman.”


After mass we made our way to the national mall to eat lunch before the
march. I have never seen so many people in one area before. Honestly, I thought that it was Mardi Gras in DC and I just didn’t get the memo or something. To see the hundreds of thousands of people was just incredible. To see all the signs that people were holding and seeing people cheering and talking and praying together was awesome. I was looking through my pictures last night and noticed a few more.. one said that ‘well yes it’s just a mass of tissue, but technically so are you’. Another just stated ‘1/3’… That’s 1/3 of our generation lost to abortion. That’s a neighbor, a classmate, a boyfriend, a best friend, maybe even a brother or sister. 1/3 of our generation…If that isn’t considered a holocaust then I’m not sure what is.

As the walk was coming to a close, we were right in front of the capital and I noticed three women standing in front of the steps with the same sign… each said ‘I regret my abortion’. I thought it was incredibly powerful so I took a picture before I was just going to continue walking. Right before I turned away, I noticed the last woman in the line. Her sunglasses weren’t tinted very well and I could see that she was clearly crying. I walked up to her and gave her a hug, and when I did she started crying more and held me tight. At that moment I realized exactly how much abortion affects not only the children that are killed, but the women who get the abortions done. Abortion is not just a physical hurt, but it is also an emotional and spiritual hurt.


After participating in the march I realized how exactly we, the SJA students, partook in history. We peacefully stood up for something we believe in. We were the voices for those who cannot speak – the unborn- and as long as abortion is still legal, we will continue to be their voice.